We all know Marshawn Lynch is a star on the football field, but he’s taken on a new venture over the offseason: acting. Lynch has been cast in the upcoming feature film “Matt’s Chance”, written and directed by Nicholas Gyeney of Mirror Images, Ltd.
Lynch isn’t the only famous name you’ll hear from the 90 minute film, though. “Matt’s Chance” also features actors Edward Furlong, Lee Majors, Margaret Kidder and the one and only Gary Busey.
Lynch was cast as a “goon”, which he prefers to call a “gansta”, in the upcoming film. He was cast after fellow teammate Roy Lewis referred him to the directors after he couldn’t commit to the role due to other commitments.
I was fortunate enough to be able to go on the set of “Matt’s Chance” after our press contact, Sophia Perez, reached out to us and inform us of Marshawn’s role. They have done a great job of hyping the film, hitting local blogs, newspapers, and even KOMO-TV and other news outlets.
The set for the day’s 12 hour shoot was located at an old Bothell bank-turned crime scene. When the cameras were rolling, Lynch was in the zone, completely focused on his role. When they were off though, that’s when the show really started.
In one instance, after the scene ended, he busted into the room and asked, with automatic rifle in hand, “Yo where the little bald guy at? I’ve got a shiny little target now” making everyone burst out in laughter.
His humor was expected after every scene cut from that point on, and he would even interject his own humor and improvise in the middle of the shot.
You could tell it was a common occurrence, as he had something witty or sarcastic to say after every take. After busting through the bank’s doors again, he walked up to the teller and asked “Do y’all accept third party checks?” Only to get a play-along response “No sir, but we do accept Western Union” which got some chuckles.
On the set, Lynch was just another actor, not noticeably different and totally relaxed within his role. Once off the set though, Lynch was a funny, humble guy. The stigma around a lot of professional athletes is that off the field they are only concerned with themselves, too big for the general public. Lynch has proven that he’s obviously not that way. After the cameras were off, he was just himself.
You won't often find a pro football player in the prime of his career acting for a film during his offseason. What we normally see pro athletes doing in their offseason is relaxing with their families and keeping in shape for the spring. It’s common to see athletes try and go on after their careers onto new ventures. We’ve seen a large number of former players go on to analyst positions at sports media companies, and on to coach. The last sports star I can remember moving on to the big screen was Shaq in “Kazaam”, nothing he’s bragging about now; he works for the TNT NBA studio.
Lynch seemed to really be enjoying himself as an actor, and it will be interesting to see where his acting career goes from here. Hopefully his role will be well received by members of the acting community, leading to bigger and better things once his football career ends.
Can Lynch set a trend that leads to more athletes in feature films? We'll have to wait to find out. Right now, we’re accustomed to seeing him tear it up on the gridiron, but I wouldn’t mind to see him tearing it up with his red dreads on the red carpet after all is said and done.
Matt’s Chance will premiere this summer in Seattle, New York, and California. It has been picked up by Fox Searchlight as well.
Follow Jimmy on twitter @jimmymichaels1